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Primrose League

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Alexander Howard
1243530.  Wed Jul 26, 2017 5:08 pm Reply with quote

Q: Which was the first national political organisation to call for votes for women?
A: (Oh, I've rather given the game away with the title.)

Q: What was the biggest political movement amongst the working class in the late 19th and early 20th centuries? (Ah, I've done it again.)

Why have we collectively forgotten the Primrose League? It was Britain's first nationwide mass political organisation. Its 'General Habitations' (conferences / AGMs) filled the Albert Hall.

There are various versions of the Primrose League Oath taken by all new "knights", but it appears to have been:

"I declare on my honour and faith that I will devote my best ability to the maintenance of religion, of the estates of the realm, and of the imperial ascendancy of the British Empire; and that, consistently with my allegiance to the sovereign of these realms, I will promote with discretion and fidelity the above objects, being those of the Primrose League."

Unarguable: I could swear that.

God bless the memory of Disraeli, and of Randolph Churchill.

At some point I might actually get round to reading the definitive work; 'A Gift from the Churchills' (Alistair Cooke, 2010)

 
suze
1243533.  Wed Jul 26, 2017 5:37 pm Reply with quote

The Primrose League ceased to be of much importance after WWI, mainly because Conservative Party membership was opened to women for the first time in 1919.

But the Primrose League only actually voted itself out of existence in 2004, by which time it had but a few dozen members. Its assets on dissolution were donated to the Conservative Party, and its last Chancellor - the 26th Baron Mowbray, a Conservative peer who wore an eye patch after losing the sight of one eye on active service in 1944 - had a photo moment presenting a cheque to Michael Howard.

 
bobwilson
1243544.  Wed Jul 26, 2017 7:36 pm Reply with quote

Quote:
It was Britain's first nationwide mass political organisation.


Really? So the Diggers, the Levellers, (and depending on your definition of "political", Boudicca)?

Still, interesting enough (and they hadn't entered my consciousness).

Quote:
"I declare on my honour and faith that I will devote my best ability to the maintenance of religion, of the estates of the realm, and of the imperial ascendancy of the British Empire; and that, consistently with my allegiance to the sovereign of these realms, I will promote with discretion and fidelity the above objects, being those of the Primrose League."

Unarguable: I could swear that.


I couldn't swear that incidentally.

 

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